August 18, 2005

Double Trouble

Raising twins is challenging. I try not to look too far forward into the future because if I’m having trouble adjusting to the challenges I’m facing right now, what good will it do me to open my eyes to a whole new set of challenges I haven’t even thought about yet This philosophy of not looking too far into the future is very prevalent in sports vernacular and I have found that it helps to keep my “eye on the ball”, and to “play it one game at a time.”

That being said, every now and then I am forced to confront my eventual reality and sometimes I am left a little unsettled. For example, today I was at Starbucks and noted a mother with two children (a boy and a girl) that looked to be about five years old. The boy caught my attention as he was hanging from the area where the coffee was placed for pick-up. Then the two chased each other around the store as the mother only half-heartedly looked on. The mother looked sorely defeated. She was not just losing the battle, she had already lost the war. As I watched the two wreak havoc on the store, condemning the poor mom in my mind for her utter lack of control of the situation, I came to a startling realization…

These two kids were twins. Boy/Girl twins.

I asked the question that I already knew the answer to. “Are they twins?” I asked.

“Yes.” The younger-than-she-looked mom sighed.

“I have two-month-old boy/girl twins at home.” I said.

She then looked at me with what could only be described a mix of pity and smug satisfaction and replied, “Good luck.”

I laughed a nervous laugh and she looked me in the eye and said, in a way that left little doubt as to the meaning behind her words, “They start Kindergarten next week.”

For the first time, she smiled.

As I watched the twins continue to run around the store I tried injecting some humor into the situation by commenting, “Yeah, I’m counting my blessings that the babies can’t yet walk or talk.”

With that, in one swoop she picked up her coffee, corralled the kids as they ran by and, as she ushered them out the nearby door replied, “You should be.”

There’s also a sports saying that came to mind as she left.

“Sucker Punched.”

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